Internal Talent Management

Gallup says that 72% of employees are disengaged. They are just sleepwalking through their jobs. What are the possibilities of changing that scenario?


In a large or small organization, wouldn’t it be helpful if we could give exposure and opportunity to all our employees? Wouldn’t their engagement rate and job satisfaction increase if we could identify their talents and skills and give them a chance to offer their expertise in other functional areas?  


What value would a supervisor or manager put on being able to search specific skills and find the talent they need resides in an employee in the Marketing Department or on the teller line or in accounting?

From an employee perspective, a key aspect of talent retention is being able to offer professional growth and the opportunity to perform meaningful work.  All too often, managers and supervisors are not aware of the talent that is “hidden” in employees in other parts of an organization.  


If an organization has been able to invest in a good LMS, managers and supervisors may be able to search for a specific skill and ability, provided the records are up to date.  When an organization has recognized their high potential employees, they then must also embark on a way to keep them engaged and interested. 


Being able to offer opportunity to collaborate cross functionally in an organization is one tool that helps both the organization and the employee by providing a developmental experience and providing a deeper connection to the organization, gained through a more meaningful appreciation of the work conducted in other business streams and an understanding outside one department of the employee’s skill and ability. 


Having the ability to search internally for specific skills and competencies and being able to support an internal collaboration on a project, provides a double win for the organization by cost effectively landing the needed talent and offering the employee an opportunity to engage and work on new projects or programs.


Benefits of hiring internally:


  • Substantial cost reduction in terms of hiring, onboarding and training new talent
  • Significant saving in terms of time taken to interview, make an offer letter, prospect having to serve notice period, joining formalities, learning phase, etc.
  • Existing employees are already familiar with the technology, products and the learning curve is smaller, so they will be able to hit the ground running, 
  • The skills are readily available especially for short time project requirements
  • The culture of learning and finding creative solutions is nurtured when employees are offered opportunities to share their expertise in other functional areas
  • Job satisfaction and engagement rates are higher
  • Reduction in attrition rates
  • Cross-functional access makes the company a better place to work and there’s improved alignment on the organisational level
  • Enhancement of resource utilisation rates 


In a September, 2019 article: CASAFARI LIFE shares that collaboration is one of their 9 core values. They shared: “Collaboration is one of our nine core values because it reminds us we won’t thrive without recognizing one another’s strengths. To us, collaboration means ‘listening and evolving together, helping and supporting each other for the sake of a collective goal; reciprocity.’ For the past eight months, we’ve been growing at top speed and encouraging our teams to focus on their own performance. A few months ago, however, we realized that they had started to grow apart from one another and coordination across departments had diminished. Organizations big and small can experience the ‘silo effect’, when teams are so inward-facing that it stops effective communication between them.”


This is a story that is common for many organizations.  It is likely that during COVID the impact of the silo effect has even deepened.  The former ability to connect with coworkers informally every day was just not a reality if all were working from home. It is a critical element for us to consider as we come back to work and begin to bake in the behaviors that will be essential to our success going forward.  


The Skill Beyond Boundaries platform offers cost-effective options for connecting to external opportunities for exchanging talent but also allows for full utilization of internal collaboration opportunities.    


[Author: Nina E Woodard, SHRM – SCP, HRCI GPHR/SPHR, Lecturer in the Colleges of Business at  University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and  University Arizona, Global Campus.

Co Author: Seema Sharma,]

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